Troma Films has spent the last 30 years entertaining the world with some of the best of the ‘worst’ in schlock movies. Troma president Lloyd Kaufman has been responsible for such classics as “The Toxic Avenger,” “The Class of Nuke Em High” and “Def by Temptation.” Relying on low-budget production values, naked women, campy dialogue and outrageous scripts, Mr. Kaufman has become an Icon to millions of fans of ‘bad cinema.” Who’s to say what’s bad and what’s good? I didn’t meet and interview Lloyd Kaufman; I experienced him. I had a hard time keeping a straight face as Mr. Kaufman talked with me and worked the crowd around the Troma booth on Day Three of DragonCon. Mr. Kaufman was signing autographs on bananas, cracker packets and anything else his awed fans thrust in front of him. The man is an artist. And entrepreneur in the style of William Castle.
The Troma team with Mr. Kaufman included two pretty Tromettes. There was a blond named Nicky who will forever be stuck in my fantasy closet. Toxie was there as well as Nazi Guy and a few others. While Mr. Kaufman takes his movies very seriously, his tongue is otherwise firmly planted in his cheek. Kaufman’s rants are extremely politically incorrect. More power to him for that! If Bill Mahar wants to know what political incorrectness really is, he should spend a short time with the dynamo behind Troma Entertainment. When my time with Mr. Kaufman was over I told him he had balls. Mr. Kaufman responded, “Yeah, but they are real small.” “They may be small, but they clang loudly,” I said. “I like that. I’m going to use that. They’re small but they clang loudly.”
RW: It's an honor to meet and talk with you.
RW: I interviewed a young filmmaker who was on a panel with you in Cannes. Steve Balderson.
LK: And Roger Corman. We helped Balderson. We admired his film and we got him on that panel. I got him on TV.
RW: He spoke very highly of you. He was awed that you had him up there. He's filming his second film this fall with Dennis Hopper.
RW: Both you and Roger Corman have helped many young filmmakers get started.
LK: Roger Corman is the Beethoven of independent film. I'm only, Lloyd and Troma are only the Zamphyr the panpipe player of independent film.
RW: (laughs) So you don't take yourself serious.
A fan comes up with a DVD to sign.
LK: Let me sign this.
To the fan.
LK: Oh, this is great one. This is a very good movie. And now that we've got a lot of war going on in our lives I think it has a special significance. What's your name?
LK: Are you glad that we went to war in Iraq?
Fan: I don't care one way or the other.
LK: I've written a book: "Make Your Own Damn Movie!" Published by St. Martins Press. Just came out, now in its second printing. It's aimed at people who want to learn about filmmaking and learn how Troma raises the money. How we find our scripts. How we write our scripts. How we distribute our movies. It's "Make Your Own Damn Movie." It's quite a good book. You can get it at Barnes & Nobel or Borders. It's fun for film fans as well as filmmakers.
"Make Your Own Damn Movie!" will also tell you how to get people naked! How to get your women naked! We don't say women we say Gynos.
Troma worker: Gyno-American!
LK: That's right! Gyno-American. That's Justin and Jason. They run the Troma delegation to NAMBLA!
Jason, Justin and everyone around laughs or groans. For those who are unaware, NAMBLA is a pedophile organization. Like I said, Lloyd Kaufman is an experience, not an interview.
RW: Oh man. That's low.
What? What? They told me NAMBLA was a Shakespeare society! Some New Age, something. Veegan Shakespeare!
Robert Burden, the creator of "The Flaming Carrot" walks up and breaks up Mr. Kaufman's shtick.
LK: Hey Bob. Here's a giant in the industry. "The Flaming Carrot." He liked the company so much, he bought it! You should interview him! People line up around the block for him. A gentleman and a genius.
Mr. Kaufman introduces Mr. Burden to the hot blond I have been fantasizing about for the last ten minutes.
LK: This is Nicky, by the way.
Bob Burden: Nice to meet you.
Interviewer's lustful thought: (Now I have a name to go with the fantasy!)
LK: Nicky, Bob's a nice guy. A Handsome guy. NAMBLA likes "Flaming Carrot."
Bob shakes his head.
Bob: Have a safe trip.
RW: What's next for you?
RW: We know who has heart around here!
LK: Yes, heart. And hard-ons!
LK: Thank you. It's full of potassium. And Troma put the 'ass' in potassium!
Lloyd is getting ready to leave Atlanta, so we take a few pictures for the story. I luck out. Nicky wraps herself around me for the photo. What a soft little body. Of course I'm distracted because Mr. Kaufman tells Nazi Boy to grab my crotch. This has been a wild experience.